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Pak J Pharm Sci. 2012 Jan;25(1):21-5.

Altered brain serotonergic neurotransmission following caffeine withdrawal produces behavioral deficits in rats.

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Department of Biochemistry, Federal Urdu University, Karachi, Pakistan.


Caffeine administration has been shown to enhance performance and memory in rodents and humans while its withdrawal on the other hand produces neurobehavioral deficits which are thought to be mediated by alterations in monoamines neurotransmission. A role of decreased brain 5-HT (5-hydroxytryptamine, serotonin) levels has been implicated in impaired cognitive performance and depression. Memory functions of rats were assessed by Water Maze (WM) and immobility time by Forced Swim Test (FST). The results of this study showed that repeated caffeine administration for 6 days at 30 mg/kg dose significantly increases brain 5-HT (p<0.05) and 5-HIAA (p<0.05) levels and its withdrawal significantly (p<0.05) decreased brain 5-HT levels. A significant decrease in latency time was exhibited by rats in the WM repeatedly injected with caffeine. Withdrawal of caffeine however produced memory deficits and significantly increases the immobility time of rats in FST. The results of this study are linked with caffeine induced alterations in serotonergic neurotransmission and its role in memory and depression.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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